Location: Porto, Portugal.

Architect: OMA – Office for Metropolitan Architecture.

The Casa da Musica, the home of the National Orchestra of Porto, is a solitary building standing on a travertine-paved plateau in front of the Rotunda da Boavista. It has a distinctive faceted form, made of white concrete, and an elevated 1,300-seat Grand Auditorium with corrugated glass facades at either end. It also contains a smaller, more flexible performance space, ten rehearsal rooms, recording studios, an educational area, a restaurant, terrace, bars, a VIP room, administration areas, and an underground car park for 600 vehicles. Innovative use of materials and colour throughout was another imperative. There is no large central foyer, instead, a continuous public route connects the spaces around the Grand Auditorium.

Photo credit: hugo moura photography.